tv U.S. House of Representatives CSPAN May 27, 2010 5:00pm-8:00pm EDT
the chair: members will please remove conversations from the floor. for what purpose does the gentleman from n jersey seek recognition? mr. andrews: mr. chairman, pursuant to house resolution 1404 as the designee of the chairman of thcommittee on armed services i offer amendments en bloc number 3. the chair: the clerk will designate the amenents en bloc. the clerk: amendments en bloc number 3, offered by mr. andrews of new jersey, consistenting of amendments number 29, 34, 40, 46, 48, 52 and 54 printed in house report 111-498. the chair: will members plea remove conversations from the floor? will people on the right of the chamber -- members on the left.
members to the rear of the chamber. the gentleman deserves to be heard. will members please remove conversations from the floor? will conversations please remove from the floor. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. andrews: thank you, mr. chairman. mr. chairman, this en bloc represents the contributions -- the chair: excuse me. pursuant to house resolution 1404, the gentleman from new
jersey, mr. andrews, and the gentleman from california, mr. mckeon, will each control 10 minutes. the chair is prepared it to recognize the gentleman from new jersey if we could suspend conversations on the floor. the gentleman from neje. mr. andrews: i thank the chairman. mr. chairman, this en bloc amendment represents th contribution by members on both parties, very thohtful, a lot of excellent ideas, the committee is pleased to support, so i would urge the committee to adopt the amendments en bloc, each of which has been examined by both the majority and the minority and i reserve the balace of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from california. mr. mckeon: mr. chairman, i rise in opposition to the amendment, claiming the time in opposition although i'm not opposed.
the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. mckeon: mr. chairman, at this time yield three minutes to the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. shuster. the chair: the gentleman from pennsylvania is recognized for three minutes. mr. shuster: i thank the gentleman -- the chair: the gentleman will suspend for just a moment. plase remove conversations from the floor. the gentleman fr pennsylvania. mr. shuster: i thank the chairman. i thank the gentleman from lifornia for yielding. i rise in support of the en bloc amenent, but i rise in opposition of the murphy amendment which will repeal don't ask, don't tell which is the current law of the u.s. military. our nation is at war and after making continuous sacrifice fighting two wars over the course of eight years, the men d women of our military deserve to be heard. this december the pentagon's don't ask, don't tell working group will return a survey of over 300,000 of our members of
our military concerning that policy. and we should listen to thmen and women in uniform first beore we act in congress. and this decision should not be based on -- mr. mckeon: . chairman, the house is not in order. the chair: the gentlan is correct. could we request respectfully people to remove their conversations from the chamber so the gentleman cld be heard. peop in the rear of the chamber, please remove yo conversations from the floo so the gentleman may proceed. mr. shuster: i thank the chairman. this decision should not be based on a campaign promise made to a particular constituent ba. but on thoughtful consideration of adiness, morale and cohesion. we owe that to the men and women who serve us in our harm's way. and week of ard from -- the- in the committee we've heard from all four of our service chiefs expressing their concerns on this amendment.
and it's unanimous that the chiefs and secretary gates and admiral mullen have recely sent a letter to the chairman of the committee, chairman skelton, and saying that they believe in the strongest possible terms that the department must, prior to any legislative action, be allowed the opportunity to conduct a thorough, objective and systemic assessment of the impact such a policy change and develop an alternative to the cohesion implementation plan and provide the president and the congress with the results in its effort in order to ensure that this step is taken in the most informed and effective manner. and that's admiral mullen and secretary gates. further, admiral roughead has sent a letter saying he shares the views ofecretary gates and a reew should be completed before any legislation change is made. further, general schwartz has said that the matter of keeping faith with those currently serving in the armed foes that
the secretary of defense commission the review that it be completed before any legislative act is done to repeal dot ask, don't tell. general kasey says the same -- has the same type of response and goesurther, saying, repealing the law before the completion of the review will be en by the men and women of the army as a reversal of our commitment to hear their views bere move forward. and, finall general conaway stated that he believes the current policy works and at this poi his best miliry advice to the committee and to the secretary of the president be to keep the law as it stands today. in additioncongress is giving up its power, surrendering, abdicating its constitutional authority to the executive branch in order to appease the political agenda. this amendment is drafted and puts a conditional future on important defense policy and law which would then only be decided by the administrati.
i believe congress should maintain its authority -- the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. mckeon: i yield the gentleman an additional minute. mr. shuster: i thank the gentleman. i believe congress should maintain its authority to review and debate this policy implication of repealing don't ask, don't tell, before it is -- the final decision is made. we e that tthe men and women in our armed services. toy colleagues, i urge them, don't shoot before we aim. i urge a no vote on the murphy amendment. thank you and i yielback. the chair: t gentleman yields back. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. andrews: mr. chairman, i yield myself two minutes before i yield to my friend from new jersey. e chair: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. andrews: the minority for understandable reasons wants to continue talking about the murphy amendment wch is not on the floor. again, to set the record straight, the murphy amendment reflects the views of the joint chiefs of staff and the secretary of defense for a very long time which has been the question is not if we're going to repeal don't ask, don't tell,
but whether and how. the murphy amendment says tha the policy will not be repealed, it will stay in effect until such time as the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff and the secretary of fense certify that nothing about that repeal will in any way undermine the security of the country, the efficiency of the armed forces or their effectiveness. the minority wants to keep talking about this, but i think the americapeop are more interested in the terrorism res the country is facing. one of t reasons the terrorism threats are so diffilt is we don't have enough arabic speakers in the intelligence units of the armed forces. there have beeseveral dozen, perhaps several hundred, arabic speaking persons have been expelled from the armed forces because of their sexual orientation that doesn't rike me as a particularly good way to protect national security. beyond that, a gd way to
protect national security in this bill is to strengthen our special forces. this legislation spends $9.8 billion on our special operations command, the highest in the history of the cotry. when we call upon brave americans to kick down that or or do a commando raid in any dark corner ofhe world that's going to prevent a terrorist attack in the country this bill supports them, this party supports that. at this time, i'd like to turn to someone who's done tremendous work on brain injuries and trauma associated with brain injury the gentleman from new jersey, . pascrell. the cir: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. pascrell: thank you seven years into war, we are still not properly screening and treating our troops for traumatic brain injury, known as the signature injury of
those wars. this is unacceptable. my amendment today builds on the requirementers in cognitive screening outlined in the 2008 defense authorization bill which most of us voted for to identify soldiers with possible brain injury my amendment ensures the same toolis used if -- used for pre- and post-deployment screenings. it requires the department of defense to complete comparative studies to find the best outroops. reening tool for the fiscal year 2008 defense authorization bill required predeployment and post-deployment screenings of soldiers' cognitivability. it's a law. the president at that time, president bush, signed it two. years later, the law has not been fulfilled.
the department of defense has implemented predeployment screening using a computerized tool kwn as anam, the automated neuropsychological ics. the army released a memo in 2008 which came to our attention two months ago. it stated, routine post-deployment anma testings not authorized. we came upon this totally by accident. this is not what the congress passed in bipartisan support. as a result, less than 1% of the 550,000 members ofhe armed forces have been given a post-deployment coitive screening. this is in violation of the intent of the 2008 defense authorization and instead of using the same test, -- one more minute if i may.
mr. andrews: i yield one more minute to the gentleman from new jersey. mr. pascrell: the military uses a simp questionnre for post-deployment screenings. a written questionnaire. these assessments are not comparable. they do not detect changes to a soldier's brain. just like in sport the key to pre- and post-injury assessments is to use the same tool. when you have a baseline, you're betteable to compare. aso-chair of the congressional brain injury task force, i recognize t need to help both our military and civilian populations in dressing brain injury. my amendment which is endorsed by the iraqi and afghanistan veterans of ameca which has bipartisan support, ensures our troops are given the proper cognitive screenings today and in the future, i asked my colleagues to suort my amendment and yield back. the chair: e gentleman yields
ba. the gentleman from california. mr. mckeon: mr. chairman, i yield to the gentleman from indiana, mr. penc three minutes. mr. pence: -- the chair: the gentleman is recogned for three minutes. . pence: i ask napolis consent to revise and exnd my remark -- i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks. the chair: without objection. mr. pence: i rise in opposition to the murphy amendment. >> parentary inquiry. the chair: state your inquiry. >> is the murphy amendment on the floor at this point? the chair: we are debating the amendments en bloc. >> the gentleman says he rises in opposition to the murphy amendment. is that in order at this time?
the chair: that's a hypothetical inquiry. mr. pence: i'm pleased to yield for the parliamentary inquiry. i rise in opposition to the murphy amendment. i do so because i believe the american people don't want to see the american military used to advance a liberal political agenda. especially when the men and women who serve in the military haven't had a say in the matter. they have been promised to have a say. we've received correspondence from leading voices in the american military. thehave suggested that were the congress today to enact this legislation, it would break faith with our men and women in uniform. now, let me concede the point. i waraised by a combat veteran.
i did not wear the uniform of the united states. but i have strg objections to repealing don't ask, don't tell. i believe that that compromise of 17 years ago has been a successful compromise. it has preserved unit cohesion. it has preserved morale. it s enabled us to go forward with readiness and recruitment withouinterruption. and it, of course, itself, was a compromise that represented a historic change if the policy of themerican military. but what's being advanced here today in repealing don't ask, dent tell, would represent a fundamental change in the nature and the culture of our military, and it ought to be carefully and thoroughly explored among the men d women doing the work in uniform. it is being explored today. the department of defense has commissioned, as we all know
here, a survey of some 350,000 servicemen and their families, 100,000 active duty. 7,000 duty spouses. 100,000 reserve component military. 80,000 reserve component spouses. a confidential surveto determine their put on the effects and concerns if don't ask, don't tell is repealed. here we are in congress, even though the survey won't be re-- won't be completed until august,nd we are hurrying along what is, for all intents d purposes, the legislation that will enable the full repeal of don't ask, don't tell. i ask my colleagues in congress to take a breath. to stop. paicularly here as we stand just a few days before that da in which we, all of us, republicans and democrs will set aside all politics and we
will remember those who did not come home. why can't we, today, also show respect for the men and women that wear the uniform today, listen to what they have say. the american people don't want our military -- mr. mckeon: i yield the gentleman an additional minute. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for an additional minute. mr. pence: the american people don't want the american military used as a vehicle to advance a liral political agenda, especially enhe men and women who serve in our military haven't had a say in the matter. that's at this congress is poised to do today. make no mistake about it. i urge my colleagues, regardless of what one thinks about social issues and social value, let's respect our military, let respect the men and women in uniform,et's hear them out before we
introduce such an enormous change in the culture and practice of the american military that would be represented by the repeal of don't ask, d't tell. and i yieldac the chair: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. andrews: before i yield to my friend, i yield myself 90 seconds. the gentleman's point about the service members being stened to is absolutely right which is my mr. murphy's amendment, i will comment on it, since he did, says that if after hearing the comments of comments of service member the secretary of defense and the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff believes there would be iairment of the ability to defend the country they would not certify to the change in the policy. there's an echo this debate that the -- that is quoted fro prior debate. the president's move would seriously impair the morale of the army at a time when the
forces should be strongest d most efficient. such an action is most unfortunate. the quote is taken from senator lister hill in 1948. the issue washe racial integration of the armedorces in 1948. i think this is the same issue. >> wl the gentleman yield? mr. andrews: i will yield. mr. pence: i thank the gentleman for the courtesy. mr. speaker, i would simply pose a question to the gentleman, did not the author of this endment say that it is not whether we will repeal don't ask, don't tell, butow and when in recent press reports. mr. andrews: i don't know what the author said he will speak. but i know that secretary gates and admiral mullen said that. admiral mullen says he feels repeel is the right policy, the iue is when and how which is what mr. murphy's amendment addresses. i would be happy to yield to my iend from indiana who is focused on the issue of
darting service members knowing their rights and opportunities, mr. carson. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. carson: thousands of active dutservice meers are returning home from iraq and afghanistan every year. many have served ctinuously since they enlisted right out of high school or college. for year, they've lived a structured military life on bases and abroad this structure makes for well discipline and well trained military force but it can also make for a difficult transition back to civilian life. many returning service members have no experience with savings, budgets, credit, taxes or mortgages. as a result, many military families are falling into unmanageable debt, bankruptcy, and foreclosure. my amendment, which i part of th en bloc amendment, seek to alleviate these concerns. it expands the military's
existing preseparation counseling program to include a personal finances component. when this takes effect, military families will re-enter civilian life with the a sble, long-term financial ld future. i encourage all my colleagues to support our military families by supporting this amendment. mr. speaker, throughout both our democratic and republican administrations, the white house has maintained a policy against providing letters of condolences to the families of suicide victims. this is a maj issue for my constituents that i have been working on for months. i've had a number of communications with the white house d the department of defense expressing these concerns. fortunately, the president was kind enough to send a personal letter of condo thrones a local family that was affected by suicide. i would like to whole heartedly thank president obama for this meaningful gesture and i encourage him to continue on this path and to finally overturn this misguided whit
house policy. our men and women in uniform sacrifice for our coury, both physically and mentally. despite the occasional exception, the current policy ignores the sacrifice these men and women make an disregards the suffering of their families and perpetuates a military cultu that's indifferent to it. i yield back my time. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from califoia. mr. mckeon: may i inquire the time remaining? the chair: the gentleman from california has 2 3/4inutes remaining. mr. mckeon: thank you. anthe gentleman fromew jersey? ch the chir: the gentleman from new jersey has 1 1/4 minutes remaining. mr. mckeon: thank you, mr. chairman. i yield myself one mute. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. mckeon: let me read again, in case i inadequately expressed before. th is the letter from
secretary gates that he told cirman skeltotwo days ago that he still stands by strongly. therefore, i strongly oppose any legislation that seeks to change this policy prior to the completion of this vital assessment process. this is the process that was set in place when the president made his comments at the ste of the union that we should -- that he wanted the don't ask, don't tell policy repealed before the end of the year. the secretary took him at his word, set up a process, the process would go out to all of the military, and their spouses, and give them a chance to respond the military would then have a chance to go over that and giveheir best military advice to the president and to the congress as to how we should move forward at that time, and that report is due by the first of december.
thank you, mr. chairman. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. andrews: i'm pleased to yield to the gentleman from calirnia who has hadome important personal experience with the issue in the murphy amendment and the gentleman from calirnia, mr. garamendi, the balance of our time. mr. garamendi: thank you, my colleague from new jers. i was elected in a special election lastovember. one of my opponents was an extraordinary young man. an african-american raised in california. went to west point, very succsful, served in iraq two tours, came out a captain, took his team there twice. on both of those tours, all of them he in very dangerous circumstances came home. he came back to america and could no longer toll late the -- tolerate the don't ask, don't tell policy. he came out of the closet. an extraordinary ls. fortunately i had another idea about who might be the next congressman. but this man could have been a general leading the entire army.
an extraordiry person. we lost that talent because of this policy andt's time for this policy to end. if only the president had the power that truman did and said, enough already, we're going to integrate the army. we need to complete that integration. the murphy amendment is absolutely essential. i yield the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california. mr. mckeon: thank you, mr. chairman. i yield myself the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. mckeon: mr. chairman, i know we have differences of opinion on this and we a have stories, as we just heard from my good friend, mr. garamendi, from my home state. and we have stories on both sides of the issue. the problem is, those are one person here, one person here, maybe we talk to 10, maybe we talk to 20. but we have 2 1/2 million people
serving and all of them should have a chance to have input that's what they were promised. that's what they were told and now we're short circuiting that process. so, all i'm saying is that we should respect all of the people and their families that are serving now in the armed servic, follow through with the things that we said, and when i talked the other day to admiral roughead, the ief of the naval operations, his concern was that if we take action now, would the vote on to -- the vote on the murphy amendment tonight which repeals don't ask, don't tell, he said it's going to cause confusion in the force. because we just hired this company to go out and do the survey, to follow through in this process that has been started. they're going to be going out into the field asking questions. what he said is, this is gog cause confusion because, as
one of e other chiefs said, the headline once this passes, if it passes, will be, don't ask, don't tell is repealed. ando when the survey goes out in the field and when they put together a focus group and the survey and all the things they're doing in response to this process that's been started , it's moot. thank you, mr. chairman, i yield back. the chair: the gentleman from new jersey has 15 seconds remaining. excuse me. the gentleman om new jersey controls the time. he has 15 seconds remaining. mr. andrews: i yield the remaining 15 seconds to my iend from california. mr. garamendi: i'm sure the admiral is able to read the amendnt, would understand that it doest go into effect until the command structure, including the president of the united states, says it's ok and the review has been completed. i yield back my time. the chair: all time has expired. he the question is on the
amendments en bloc -- the question is on the amendments en bloc offeredy the gentman from new jersey. those in for say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the en bloc amendments are agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from new jersey seek recognition? mr. andrews: mr. chairman, pursuant to house resolution 1404, i offer en bloc amendment package number 4, including modifications to amendment number 18. the chair: the clerk will desigte the amendments en bloc and report the modification to amendment 18. the clerk: amendments en bloc, number 4, offered by mr. andrews of new jersey, consisting of amendments number 12, 17, 18 as modified, number 25, 28, 35, 37 and 44, printed in house report 111-148. the chair: pursuant to house --
the clerk: notification to the amendment offered by mr. dingell of michigan, amendment number 18 of the report of the committee on rules, house report 11 -49 -- 111-498,he amendment is as follows. page 84 after line 24 insert the following, section 315, information sharing relating to investigation of exposure to drinking water contamination at camp lejune, north carolina, by not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this act, the secretary of defense shall provide the agency for toxic -- toxic substances andisease registry with an electric -- electronic inventory with all records and electronic data, pertaining to the c.e.r. -- cercla listed contamination sites at camp lejeune and all existing documents.
>> unanimous consent that we dispense with the reading. the chair: without objection. pursuant to house resolution 1404, the gentleman from missouri, mr. skelton, and the gentleman from california, mr. mckeon, will each control 10 miutes. the chair cognizes the gentleman from ssouri. mr. skelton: mr. chair, i urge the committee to adopt the amendments en bloc, all of which have been examined by bo the majority and the minority. mr. chairman. i yield two minutes to my colleague, the gentleman from north carolina, mr. etheridge. the chair: t gentleman from north carolina is recognized for two minutes. mr. etheridg i thank the gentlen for yielding and thank him for the time. mr. speaker, i rise today in support of the en bloc amendment to the national defense authorization act and in support of the underlying bill. we in north carolina are rightly proud of our military and we
understand that, as they serve us, we must providthem with wt they need to get their job done. this bill does just that. authorizing funds for our troops, for our veterans and for our military families. my amendment, which i offered with my colleagues, mr. kissel and . bishop of georgia, would enhance our support for the military and the communities they live in. it would reinforce congress' commitment to the quality of life of america's soldiers, officers, civilns and their families. supporting our troops means supporting military families and the communities they call home. military facilities being -- bring significant benefits to our communities. but they also bring significant strain on those communities. our amendment clarifies that
when the military plans rapid growth in an area, th department can join with the affected community to prepare for that growth. it empowers our communities to make strategic, planned investments to respond to the strategic planned transition. i thank the chairman for including it the en bloc amendment and ie my colleagues to support the amendment and the authorization bill. i thank you and i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california. mr. mckeon: mr. chairman, i yield two minutes to the gentleman from florida, mr. putnam. mr. putnam: i thank the member and the gentleman from missouri for their support of this and the inclusion of it on the en bloc amendment. it is a small change in the big scheme of things but one which i believe will have a tremendous impact not only on our acve duty personnel but on our men and women who are returning. it's rooted in experience in
watching the success of these wounded warrior projects where we have special opportunity hunts for men and women who are returning back to the states and getting reacquainted with the sporthat they love so much. there are over 400 military installations across the country that allow for recreational hunting and fishing on their property. there managed individually by the local commanders, they allow the public to access these areas by providing a tremendous benefit to those neighboring communies, by allow -- allowing them to share in the natural resources and by allowing the public to acss these areas and enjoy the lands, it helps establish positive relationships between the department and the civilian population. last month the president launched his great outdoors conservati initiative where reeational hunters and fishermen are recognized for having led the charge in the area of convation and the benefit of these you -- conservation and the benefit of these military installations shall be considered. the greater access we have to enjoy the outdoors and promote
these activities will help promote conseation for future generations and healthier lifestyles. i want to point out that in addition to the access, you have the accessibility issues, hydraulic lifts, wheelchair accessible duck blinds, hunting stands, miner improvements that mean a great deal to men and women coming home. only 20 of those 400 sites are currently accessible for our disabled and i believe that we cannot underestimate the value of making those improvements to give them the opportunity to share in those outdoor experiences. mamplee, we should support the military -- mr. chairman, we should support the military installations and encourage them to continue to do so where appropriate and urge the department of defense to make more of these facilities accessible for our veterans. and with that i yield back my time and thank the gentleman for yielding. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. the ntleman from missouri. mr. skelton: mr. chairman, i eld two minutes to my friend, the genelady from texas, ms. jackson lee. the chair: the gentlelady from
texas is recognized for two minutes. ms. jackson lee: thank you very much, mr. chairman. i rise as a supporter of the bi for the purpose of engaging in a colloquy withhe chairman. i would like to discuss the important role the national aeronautics and space administration plays in our national security. in fact, i had legislation that established na as a national security asset. chairman skelton, would you you a dry that our national security -- agree that our national space security -- national security space programs -- do you you a dry -- do you agree that nasa's space program have made important contributions to our national and homeland security, economic security and technological competitiveness? finally, it is my hope that the department of defense will carefully assess the national security assets that may be possessed by nasa. mr. skelton: i certainly thank the gentlelady from texas r her observations.
yes, of course i agree that nasa space programs have made important contributions to our national security. and in specific response to your concern, the industrial base required for riable space launch could be placed atisk by e proposed changes in the hun space flight program. if -- further, i understand that the department is further evaluating the impact of those changes. ms. jason lee: thank you very much, mr. chairman. my colleagues and i appreciate your views. transferng funds from the human space flight program to unproven commercial space efforts designed to carry human and crew into space is unreasonable and may be an unreasonable risk this country should not take at this time. i hope we can work together on this issue to ensure the continuation of human space flight programs. thank you, mr. skelton, for suppting nasa and i yield ba my time. mr. skelton: i thank the gentlelady. the chair: the gentlelady yields back. the gentleman from california.
mr. mckeon: mr. chairman, i yield two minutes to the gentleman from texas, mr. gohmert. the chair: the gentleman from texas is recoized for two nutes. mr. gohmert: thank you, mr. speaker. we heard our colleague across the aisle talking about the don't ask, don't tell a obviously this is supposed to be about a bloc of amendments and i don't have objection to those. though i'd like to use this time o address that issue. this body, leaders in this body, the white house, have all told the president or from the president to the chairman of the joint chiefs, the secretary of defense had promised our men and women who wear the uniform that their opinion will be considered. a survey and study are being done. now, we've heard about individual cases where this
person ended up getting out, as we heard, he couldn't keep his sexual urges private and so he had to make them overt and therefore he was outprocessed. thpolicy has been, as long as the sexuality is a private matter, then it doesn't damage thmission of the military, but when it becomes overt, whether 's an officer having a heterosexual affair or whether it's overt homosexuality, through the history of the military, it has been a problem to the ongoing morale of the military and accomplishment of the mission. anything that strikes from the mission should be eliminated. so the message here is, the hundreds of people that have urged me, please fight for us and what we believe in, because i've heard froso many, if yo push this through, we're out, we're done. we hear some isolated cases,
but, please, let's don do damage to the military and brea our promise to them, let's wait until the study's completed. i yield bck. the chair: the gentlewoman from missouri has sick and a ha minutes. mr. skelton: pursuant to house resolution 1404, i hereby give notice that the amendments numbered 15 and 62 may be offered out of order. mr. chairman, i yieltwo minutes to my friend and colleague, the gentleman from tennessee. the chair: the gentleman from tennessee is recognized for two
minutes. >> thank you, mr. speaker, and i appreciate mr. skelton yielding to me. i'd like to thank the congressmen for their work on this amendment. it will play an important part inner suring that america taxpayers are not forced to sub sigh dies pollutant sources. it no way affects the ability to from cure readily available fuels. it clarifiein the energy independence and security act, not predominantly derived from tar sands andoals to liquid, turning coal into liquid, prosecution twice as much greenhouse gas. generates 14%o 42% more greenhouse gas and pollution per unit of energy compared to production of conventional fuels. further, it's destructive to our environment. the federal government should not play an inappropriate role subsidizing the production of these outdepated sources.
however, today, most if not publicly available fuel containing tar sands oil with small amounts of that resource. this amendment will not affect the ability -- other agencies continue to process tar sands oil. however, section 526 has successfully kept taxpayers -- highly o'polluted fuel production and will continue clean energy production for domestic sources. this amendment passed by unanimous recorded vote last year and i along with my colleagues urge a yes vote today. thank you, mr. speaker, and thank you, mr. chairman. the chair: the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. mckeon: i yield three minutes to mr. akin. ache ache it's a treat to be able to rise and sathe en bloc amendment is fine. mr. aki just as most of what is in the bill is fine. unfortunately, there is an amendment which is being awe thoored, which threatens to
poison the entire package and do great damage to our military. that is an issue that you've heard from earlier this day, the idea of repealing the don't ask, d tell legislation. now, the way it works curntly in the military is that if y happen to be home sexual and you -- homo sexual and you want to serve in the military, that's fine. as long as your particular sexual tastes don't get in the way of performing the mission, there's no problem. the point is, the military has a job to protect our citizens, and we don't want things getting in the way of that. if you were to commit adultery, you could be discharged because that gets in the way of our performing our mission. now, we face an amendment here which is opposed by all of our military leadership, which says we're going to repeal don't ask, don't tell. what then does that look like? i mean, currently the policy is you could be gay, and as long as it doesn't get in the way of
doing your job, everything is fine. so now we're going to repeal don't ask, don't tell. so what exactly are we asking? are we asking the military then to protect or condone homosexual behavior if it does get in the way of performing the mission? what exactly are we talking about? are we talking about creating separate dormitories, for instance, if we have sexual ha -- harassment? what will this have to do with recruitment? people that have a 17-year-old kid that may be wanting to sign up. what will this do to recruitment? what's it going to do to the morale of the troops? what's it going to do to small unit cohesion? and also, the other piece of the military is about these soldiers giving their time and lives are confined to very tight areas and are pushed together in very difficulcircumstances over long periods of time. what is the effect on that? all of these questions are sitting out there, and the
military leadership is saying, yeah, we don't know the answers to those questions. give us some time to take a look at it. we don't want you to pass this until we can see what's going on with this. now, i have three sons. they graduated naval academy. all of them went marine corps. one survived his experience in 2005 in fallujah. when our sons and daughters are serving and laying their lives or their bodies on the line so that we can live in peace and freedom, that is a very sacred kind of sacrifice that they're making for us. so why would we belittle that by jumping into something -- 're being asked to pass something that we don't even know what we're passing. we don't understand the implications or how it would look. yet we're going to jump into this for what, some sort of political deal to satisfy some vocal but small minority? using the lives of our own children. i will not have -- the chair: the gentleman's time
is expired. mr. akin: just for political purposes. mr. skelton: mr. chairman, i yield one minute to the gentleman from michigan, mr. dingell. the chair: the gentleman from michigan is recognized for one minute. mr. dingell: i ask unanimous consent to revise and extenmy remarks. the chair: without objection, so ordered. mr. dingell: i thank mr. skelton's for his support of this amendment and for the yielding of this time. is is an amendment which is to deal with very important injustice done by marines, by the department of the navy. you may read more about it in my remarks as they are extended. in a nutshell, people in the marine corps are ing hurt, injured, poised, given cancer and other things by the way the department of navy has run the post and has provided
contaminated water to the members of the marine corps and to their fmilies. this will at least get us into the process of giving information to these marines about what has happened and why it is that they're suffering this way, and see to it that we are taking a step forward and have the marine corps deliver some of the iormation that they are supposed to deliver under an agreement. i urge my colleagues to ve for the amendment, and i thank my friend from missouri. the chair: the gentleman's time is expired. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. mckeon: may i ask about the remaning time? the chair: the gentleman from california has three minutes reining. mrmckeon: thank you, mr. chairman. i yield myself the balancof the time. i have another letter to read, i'd like to insert it into the record. this is from general karl e.
mundy junior, united states marine corps, retired. sent an identical letter, i believe, to the chairman. he said, you and i both know that -- well, i'll read the whole thing. i write to convey my appreciation f your strong stance relative to efforts to repeal the current law which excludes homosexuals from serving openly in the armed services. you and i both know that such aiois not in the best interest of our nation or its armed forces. while each member of the house has many constituencies to serve, some very vowcarbling it may be the largest is your 2.8 million men and women who serve and their family members who support them. in sharp contrast to homosexual activists, these volunteers in uniform serve silently and obediently and rely on the reasoned judgment of their
leaders and even more so, perhaps, of those empowered to "raise armies, provide and maintain aavy, and tmake the rules for the governments thereof," to speak and to represent them. secretary gates has put in the motion and effort to at least give this element of your constituents an oprtunity to be heard retive to their concerns about implementation. the very large majority of service members who are not homosexual, at least 97% or more, deserve to be heard before any preemptory, uninformed action is taken to impose the sexuality of a minority on them. i believe strongly that moratorium on discharges being advocated by some of the senate and your committee as well could be tantamount to muzzling those -- those most affected by such preemptory action. i appreciate the stand you've taken to prevent this.
i would likeo enter general mundy's letter into the record. the chair: the request to insert into the record is approved by general lee. mr. mckeon: mr. chairman, the have been comments made that perhaps the chief's support this action that will be taking place tonight on this vote, tonight or tomorrow, whenever we get to this amendment, but i must reiterate, i spoke to them on the phone. and they followed up with a letter, and to a person, they all opposed us taking action before the recommended procedure that the secretary has set in place. and i mention again the fact that we have hired -- e chair: the gentleman's time
is expired. mr. ckeon: thank you, mr. chairman. the chair: the gentleman from missouri is recognized. mr. skelton: mr. chairman, pursuant to 14, i hereby give notice that amendments number 68 and 81 may be offered out of order. mr. chairman? the chair: without objection, so ordered. mr. skelton: i yield three minutes to my colleague, the gentlelady texas, ms. ckson lee. the chair: the the gentlelady from texas is recognized. ms. jackson lee: chairman, i rise today as we debate the defense authorization bill to discuss the concept of humanity. i believe the men and women of the united states mility have a sense of humanness and courage and the broadness of their humanity causes them to sacrifice on behalf of the american people. tay stand here and thank
them. then i want to acknowledge as well the broad civilian support staff that are found on the nation's military bases and around the world. i got a good sensof that when i joined sadly my fellow colleagues at fort hood a few months ago mourning the loss of civilian and soldier at the hands of a terrorist. i was able to see civilian and soldier coming together, expressing concern for each other. i saw the mourning of those families who had lost their fallen heroes, their soldiers. yes, i saw the civilian staff mourn as well their families who had been lost, their fellow workers and colleagues, soldiers, and a civilian, and those who were injured. as we mourn, it came to my attention that we must take care of all of them. sergeant kimberly moonly, who
was a sergeant, a fort hood police sergeant, whowas attributed the success of bringing down this particular ngerous person, despite being shot herself. or a 19-year-old nutritionist, who put a tourniquet on a wounded soldier and carried them out for medical care. i am grateful that the committee has accepted my amendment, and i ask my colleagues to support the idea of more or continued post traumatic stress disorder counseling for the civilians on this base and to ensure that that happens if ever such a tredy occurs again, to be able to provide them wi that kind of support system. i promised the community that i would return, and intend to do so, check on how they are doing. but it is important that we stand here today as we look toward memorial day, mourning those lost to be able to say to those here that we will counsel or provide them with the
services necessary in po-traumatic stress disorder. i started out quickly, mr. chairman, by talking about humanity, and i finish by saying i've heard all of the talk about don't k, don't tell. it is interesting to know that the secretary of defense, the chief of the joint chiefs as well as the esident recognized the importance of acknowledging the military and its stand. . provide the opportunity for americans who happen to be of african-american heritage to serve. there is a reason for don't ask don't tell to be eliminated. and everyone needs the right to serve and this is the right thing to do it. repeal it. the chair: the gentlelady's time
has expired. the gentleman from missouri is recognized. the gentleman from missouris recognized. mr. skelton: i yield back. the chair: the question is on amendments en bloc offered by the gentleman from new jersey. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. inhe opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the enloc amendments are agreed to. it is now in order to consider amendment numr 21 printed in house report 11-498. for what purpose does the ntleman from illinois seek recognition. mr. gutierrez: to have my amendment called up at this point. the chair: the clerk wl designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 21 printed in house report 111-498 offered by mr. gutrrez of
illinois. the chair: thgentleman from illinois, mr. gutierrez and a member opposed each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from illinois. mr. gutierrez: in 2009, the occupational safety and health admistration ined $87 million for safety violations at a texas city refinery, many of which were identified after the 2005 explosion and then ignored there. as recently as two months ago, b.p. was fined another $3 million at the toledo, ohio refinery, similar to those identified in the 2005 texas city refinery explosion. no steps were taken to fix the safety violations. b.p. is a bad partner for the u.s. government. but rise today to say that b.p. stands for too many broken promises, broken lies and broken
laws. my amendments simple. it would require that the secretary of defense consider disbarring b.p. if they find they are not a responsible source. as a federal contractor, b.p. must meet federal acquisition standards. what's the definition? it includes the pvision that a prospective contractor must have a saturday other record of integrity and business ethics. they do not uphold that standard. as well, they must have a satisfactory performance record to take that definition, integrity is firm adherence to a quota or standard of values. b.p. clearly does not meet the standar set by even the lowest code of values. the history that i have talked about cannot be ignored. in march of 2005, before the recent explosion at a b.p. texas
refinery, 15 people lost their lives, 180 jusdiction. the protection board believed the explosion could ha been avoided had it not be for organizational and safety efficiencies at all levels of b.p. corporation. and when they polluted in alaska, e e.p.a. and every governmental official encraged the u.s. attorney to indict them criminally for their abuse of safety standards. now, let me just say this comes straight, straight from b.p.'s code of conduct. b.p. code of conduct. i got it from the internet and here's what it says. our code of cduct is the cornerstone of our commitment to integrity. integrity? an important consideration of how b.p. addresses integrity, quote, it says, code of conduct is the coerstone.
moreover within the code of conduct, b.p. states they are committed to providing all b.p. employees with a safe and secure work environment where no one is suject to unnecessary risk. it says this right here from their manual code of ethic and saysit right here on page 72. make sure you know what to do if an emergency occurs at your place of work, right from the b.p. manual and code of conduct. clearly, they're not meeting their code of conduct. but it gets worse. this comes from this very manual, which i ask unanimous consent for it to bedmitted into the record. the chair: the gentleman's request is covered by general leave. mr. gutierrez: we aim for no accident, no harm to people and no damage to the environment. zero for three. i didn't make this up. it's in their code of conduct. d if we are supposed to be
responsible and make sure that contractors, $2 billion we buy from b.p. ery year, i say we bunot one dollar more of their oil. they have been irresponsible and don't even meet their own code of conduct that comes down from their own website. mr. speaker, i think we have an obligation, a responsibility to the american taxpayers to respond. and what does my simple amendment say? it says the secretary of defense should consider, consider disbarring b.p. if he finds they don't meet the code of conduct, which should be administered to every provider of goodto the american people in which we spend the american taxpayers' dollars. i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. any member seek time in opposition to the amendment? the gentleman from california is
recognized. mr. mckeon: i rise to seek the time in opposition, although i'm not opposed to the amendment. i would like to make a couple of points. the chair: without objection. the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr.ckeon: the secretary would have to determine that b.p. is not a responsible source. if the secretary determines that b.p. was not a responsible source, the secretary would already be authorized to consider debarment. the secretary is not obligated to debar b.p. or any of his subsidiaries in any circumstance. and having said that's correct i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from illinois. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it and the amendment is agreed to. mr. gutierrez: mr. speaker, i ask for a yeas and nays and roll call vote on that. the chair: the gentleman asks for a recorded vote? mr. gutierrez: yes. the chair: pursuant to clause 6,
rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from illinois will be postponed. mr. gutierrez: thank you, mr. speaker. the chair: it is now in order to consider amendment number 42 printed in house report 111-498. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from california seek recognition? ms. eshoo: i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 42 printed in house report 111-498 offered by ms. eshoo of california. the chair: pursuant to house report 11-498, the gentlewoman from california, ms. eshoo and a member opposed each will control five minutes. ms. eshoo: i offer amendment number 42 to the national defense authorization act. mr. chairman, what bringse to the floor is something that i
think should concernvery single member of the house. we all know th our number one obligation as members of congress is to secure our country and as a member of the house intelligence committee, it matters not republican or democrat, we stand sulder to shoulder. we may debate different things and we all know and the full house knows this is our first and top obligation. in order to carry that obligation out, that duty done well as a member of the house intellence committee, we must do effective oversight. we have to donvestigations. it is the way we do our work. and the reason i offer this amendment is because unlike all the rest of the committees of the house who can use the g.a.o., dispatch the general
accounting office into the executive branch to make the kinds of determination s on financial issues -- determinationses on financial issues, information technology, whatever it might be, the house intelligence committee is not allowed to do that. and in attempting to do it, it has drawn the ire of the administration. ow, i'm a democrat and we have a democratic administration. i ink the administration is ill advised in this. these are the prerogatives of the congress and the jurisdiction of our committees. and i think that we need to be able to have the tools that the g.a.o. has with a of the safeguards in place relative to sources and met thods and those things that -- methods and those
things that are most sensitive in the intelligence community. but i don't believe the executive branch should be telling the legislative branch what tools we should have and to make that decision for us. that speaks to the separation of powers. anit also speaks to what we, as members of congress, in terms of our duty and have to carry out to do. and so my amendment really corrects this flaw. and i think it's an important provision that would restore the g.a.o.'s role in congressional oversight. i don't think this is a question as to whether the information is too sensitive to the g.a.o. they have the security clearances and have dealt with things before and nothing has ever happened. as i side, i believe this issue goes directly to the heart of one of the most important functions of the congress. and that is effective efctive
-- effective oversight and that'at this amendment is all about. i thank chairman berman for his work on thiissue and also my colleagues from the whose intelligence committee who are responsible for this amendment. congressman holt, congressman thompson and congresswoman hakowsky of illinois. atthis point, i would like to -- i'm managing the time, correct? i would like to yield to mr. berman, my trusted and distinguished california from california. the chair: the gentleman from california is recognized for 1 1/2 minutes remaining. mr. berman: thank you, very much , mr. chairman. the amendment cuts right to the heart of our constitutional authority. congressional oversight of matters in this case, within the
intelligence community, basic functions, financial management, acquisitionsinformation technology, a fundamental prerogative of this body, a prerogative that should not be limited to the intelligence committees. bottom line, g.a.o. plays a critical role in helping the committees examining agencies within their jurisdictions and its expertise needs to be brought to bear on the intelligence community. this is particularly true after 2000 reforms that established odni. there is no agencies that have undergone anoverhaul and that is within the intelligence community. committees of appropriate jurisdiction are blocked fm investigating areas within their domain for oversight purposes having nothing to do -- we
clearly exempt the sources and methodissues from this oversight, makes no sense and is an insult to the prerogative of the congress and to the extent that the administration argues that this should be solely within their prerogative, they don't understand our role in congress. i don't know how anyone in this body who is interested in dealing with waste, fraud or duplication would want to limit the g.a.o.'s authority to go into appropriatareas within the intellence community. i urge an aye vote. the chair: all time has expired. anyone seek time in opposition? the gentlen from texas? >> i seek the time in opposition. the chair: gentleman is recognized. mr. thornberry: the first and most important point to make, it doesn't belong in this bill and imperils the whole bill.
this issue whether to expand g.o.'s authority to investigate the intelligence community has been an issue in they 2010 authorization bill and has been the subject of veto threats from the administration and is not one of the reasons that we still do not have an intelligence authorization bill. so it does not belong here. this is the d.o.d. authorition bill. it ibeing discussed in another forum, where it should, the inteigence authorization bill. and if it gets added to the d.o.d.uthorization bill, it puts in danger this entire bill, because just today, the administration sent another email, which confirmed the veto threat over this provision. so, however members feel about the pticular issue one way or the other, i would suggest that you oughto be very careful about endangering the whole bill over this provision. second point i would make is,
this isn't a change to be taken lightly. as the gentlelady, my colleague on the intelligence committee mentioned, the g.a.o. has not had this power, authority before since the modern intelligence community, really, has existed. congress after congress of both parties, presides after presidents of both parties have rejected th. i would suggest, for some very good reasons. so this is not a step to be taken lightly. i think the only argument one can make is that the current intelligence committees are incapable of performing their oversight responsibility and therefore, they have to get this other entity, g.a.o. in to help hem do that. i don't agree with that poition. i think the intelligence committees in the house and senate are capable of performing their job. now, i get frustrated. i don't agree with everything
that the majority chooses to do, but i believe that the committee is perfectly capable of oversight of the intelligence community as we were tasked to do in the house rules and by statute. these committees were created in the 1970's to fill a very unique role. and to undermine them by saying they're incapable of performing their j without bringing g.a.o. and investigators and so forthi think is a mistake. . i also believe it may undermine the role of the d.n.i. at a time that is very sensitive for the role of the d.n.i., because if you look at the amendment itself, it says the comptroller general decides what he needs access to, has control over how thes investigations will be
conducted. now, the amendment says they n have discussions with the d.n.i., but the decision is with the comptroller general. further undermining the d.n.i.'s control over classified material. i think that's a mistake. there are other flaws, in my view, in this amendment, but the bottom line is it undermines the bill, it does not belong here, and it is a step that previous congresses, previous presidents have not chosen to take because of the sensitivity of the material and the unique roles that the select committees on intelligence play. therefore, i hope my collgues on both sides of the aisle will reject this amendment. i urge them to do so. i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentlelady's time has expired. >> mr. chairman -- >> unanimous consent request at this point?
the chair: a request to extend time must be congruent on both sides. >> i would make a unanimous consent quest to extend for each side one minute. the chair: wiout objection, so ordered. >> we eld one minute to the speaker of the house. the speaker: thank you very much, mr. speaker. i thank the gentleman for yielding. i commend congresswoman eshoo for herttention to this important matter, her leadership in bringing this amendment to the floor. mr. speaker, as you all know, protecting american people is our first responsibility. their security is what we take an oath to uphold, protect, and defend. in order to do that, we recoize the importance of intelligence gathering to preventing violence and to protecting the american people, especially this age when we're fighting terrorism at home and abroad.
the issue before us is if the responsibilities of congress can be honored without the knowledge that we are entitled to. this is a very important issue. we all recognize it. the gentlemanaid the importance of having information be kept secret, orwhen it's in our national security's interest to do so. but to overdo that to the extent of having congress not have the information it needs to do its job of proper oversight to protect the american people. we cannot -- per preventing harm, and if were going to protect harge we have to have information to do so. and the members the committee of the intelligence committee have a responsibility to hold that information close. this doesn't apply to every piece of information of intelligence that ces to the committee, but it does say that the g.a.o. has proven track record of conducting thorough
professional investigations. that their work has informed the congress and led to significant changes that have enhanced our government's effectiveness. g.a.o. staff are professionals to protect information held by the intelligence community. a vote for this amendment is a vote for enhancing intelligence oversights. it is a vote for congress. i urge our colleagues to support the eshoo amendment. i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentlelady yields bk. thgentleman from california is recognized. the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. thornberry: thank you. mr. chairman, i certainly agree with the distinguished speaker about the importance of our role in national security and the importance of congress' role in overseeing the intelligence community. i agree that national security is the first job of the federal government. i also agree with both the gentleladies from california that oversight can be improved from the congress. as a matter of fact, i've had
legislation which has been -- which has not been alled to be voted on the floor to make clear the tification requirements in sthachute about what any administration must notify congress about. i'd also have to point out that e 9/11 commission made a number of very important recommendations on how we can improve oversight in this congress. unfortunately, that have not been adopted. now, they adopted kind of a hybrid panel of the appropriations committee, but that was not aall what the 9/11 commission, the w.m.d. commission recommend we do to improve oversight. i think we should focus on making our committees of oversight more effective rather than bringing in this other entity, the general accounting office, that is historically never had a role with the intelligence community, that the president says he will veto the bill over if we allow it to happen. let's look at ourselves, improve ourselves first before we start bringing in others. i thank the chair and yield
back. the chair: the gentlen's time is expired. the questions on the amendment offered by the the gentlewoman from california. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. . in the opinion the chair, the eyes have it. >> mr. chairman, i ask for a recorded vote. the chair: pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, the proceedings offered by thehe gentlewoman from california will be postponed.
the chair: it is now in order to consider amendment number 47 printed in house record 111-498. for what purpose does the the gentleman from maryland seek recognition? the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 47 reported in house report 111-498 offered by mr. sarbanes of maryland. the chairthe the gentleman from maryland each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentman from maryland. mr. sarbanes: thank you, mr. chairman. this amendment, amendmen47, i believe, would bringtandards
good government and good gornment practice to procurement across the federal agencies. what it does, in fact, is it takes a set of standards that has been put in place already with respect to the department of defense. as a result of e d.o.d. authorization bill of 2008, as well as standards that were built in to appropriations bills applying to other agencies over the last couple of years, and it makes it clear that those are going to be authorized standards going forward to apply to non-d.o.dagencies as well now as the d.o.d. agencies. as many people know, over the last few years, the impulse to contract services out on the part of the federal government went too far. and, in fact, studies have demonstrated that the -- for example, the department of defense's service contractor
work force grew from $732,000 in 2000 to 1.2 million in 2006, a huge increase. and this kind of phenomenon was not limited to the department of defense. we saw it in other agencies, the department of homeland security and other places across the federal work force secretary gates recognizing that things are going too far in this direction is looking for a better balance, has already declared the d.o.d. will examine this reliance on contractors and begin to bring more of a balance back into the equation. so what this amendment would do is it would take that same approach, those same standards and apply them across the board to non-d.o.d. agencies. it includes a number of provisions. very briefly, i will go over those. the first is it would close a
loophole that it allows certain work performed by federal employees to be contracted out, without determining whether, in fact, that would result in any savings. well, that's the kind of analysis that needs to be done. and so we would close that loophole. it would create a contractor inventory. right now we don't really have a sense of which contracts are out there, what kind of outsourcing has been done. we need to get a handle on that, have an inventory, so we can make better decisions and informed judgments going forward. it would also seek to bring some analysis as to when it's appropriate bring back in-house some of these functions and operations that have been outsourced, according to very reasonable and rational stanrds. and the last thing it would do is improve oversight and transparency. it would prevent any agency from
establishing arbitrary quotas or targets or numerical goals with respect to what should be outsourced or not. in other words, what this seeks to do is bring a rational analysis back to whether something should be outsourced or not outsourced. it doesn't try to tilt the presumption in one direction or another. it just says let's look at this on a careful bas and determine when it makes sense, when it can generate savings, when it's a good thinfor the federal government to do, and when it may not be such a good thin to do. so i urge support of this amendment because i do believe it will bring common sense, good government provisions back into the mix, and will make those permanent for all government agencies acrosthe board, and i reserve my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves. dos any member seek time in opposition? >> yes, mr. speaker. the chair: the gentleman from colorado is recognized.
>> thank you. at this time, i'd like to yield three minutes to representative issa. the chair: the gentleman from is recognized for three minutes. mr. issa: i thank the gentleman for the te. mr. sarbanes i'm sure is well intended with his argument. i hope the chair will take note that this note is whoy outside the jurisdiction of this committee, and for that reason, it would be subject to a rule if the rule allowed it. more importantly, it is very clear that although well intended, it falls short of its innded mark. mr. sarbanes in his comments rightfully so said he wanted to establish standards. but i'm sure the gentleman wants to establish a standard. this amendment would establish every agency having a different standard. we already have the office of management budget and other agencies working to define inherently governmental in a uniformed way, and that is
critical. we do not want to bring in anything which is les expensive to do out of house. it is not necessary to bring in house. i share with the gentlemathe desire to make sure that which must be done by the government, that which is so special that we definitely do not want profit fitting into the equation. we want it done by the government. i never again want to consider anything being outsourced simply because we don't have the will to build the resources in-house, particularly when it often uld cost more, not less, to outsource. so i would hope that the gentleman would withdraw his amendment, e, because it's outside the jurisdiction of this committee, and two, because there is a time and a place to get a standard. we already have an effort under way by this administration to establish a single standard, one that could be uniformly executed, that would save money, and save confusion. with that, i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields
back his time. the gentleman from maryland is recognize >> may i inquire how much time is available? the chair: the gentleman from maryland has one minute remaining. mr. sarbanes: i yield 45 seconds to the gentman from massachusetts. >> i rise in support of the amendment offered by mr. sarbanes of maryland. this ensures due diligence by comparing cost comparisons beforeny award can be awarded to contractors. . the problems contracting out in the iraq reconstruction era think this is a great idea. we think this is an idea that wi make sure that we do effective cost analysis and al
measure the appropriateness of whether or not co government functions should be contracted out to begin with. but i thank the gentleman. i appreciate the time and i yield back. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from colorado is recognized. >> i yield myself such time as i may consume. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. lamborn: this isn't working so great and to take it to other departments in the government is not a good idea. were promised which would have a cost analysis that the validity of analysis and cost models would be provided and that hasn't been provided. so we have these glowing claims that this is going to save money but we hen't seen the analysis backing that up. so what we do know is that there will be people in the private sector losing their jobs. it will get transferred to the government service, but are we comparing apples to apples or
apples to oranges? the claims that this will save mon, i'm not sure they take into account health care coverage and pensions that federal employee would receive on top of their salary. and i also question the long-term strategic use, especially in the defense department, of t great amounts of in-source being talked about because the most innovation that we get comes historically from the private sector. and people that are in government are well intentioned. they do their best, but it's not that same cutting edge innovation and technology improvements in government service that we see with people working in the private sector. the competition is so intense that can drive innovation in the private sector. so to give that up for core competencies, core things that
should be done by the private sector is something that see as not good for the long-term strategy of the defense industry. so for that reason, too, i really have to question this impulse to take something that's really not working that great d apply it to all of government just because you know a few exales of where a contrtor was paid too much. i agree with representative issa. we need to, first of all, step back and see if this is working in the department of defense. and to assume that it is on very skim pi or constant evidence and apply it to the entire government is premature and has ti. i would urge a n vote. i urge eryone to oppose it. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from maryland is recognized for 15 seconds. mr. sarbanes: i yield to my
colleague. mr. andrews: the question supports this amendment because it is merit-driven decision making. the o.m.b. will oversee this process. it will support the taxpayer. i yield back. the chair: the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from amendment. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair the ayes have it -- the gentleman from california. mr. issa: i ask for the yeas and nays. the chair: does the gentleman ask for a recorded vote? mr. issa: i ask for a recorded vote. the chair: further proceeding on this amendment will be postponed. for what purpose does the gentleman from new jersey se recognition? mr. andrews: pursuant to house resolution 1404, as the designee
of the chairman on the committee on armed services iffer amendments en bloc number five. the clerk: amendments en bloc number five offered by mr. andrews of new jersey consisting of amendments numbed 5, 6, 7, 11, 14, 19, 31 and 33, printed in house report number 111-498. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 14, the gentleman from new jersey, mr. andrews and the gentleman from california, mr. mckeon, each will control 10 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from new jersey. mr. andrews: i thank the chairman. mr. chairman, this is an example of members from both sides of the aisle making well thought-out contributions on a whole range of issues we think improve the bill. both the majority and minority vice presidentmined each of
he provisions in the en bloc amendment. we support each of them. at this time, i would reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. mckeon: mr. chairman, i claim the time in opposition, although i don't oppose the amendment. at this time, i would like to yield to the the gentleman from colorado three minutes, mr. coffman. the chair: the gentleman from colorado is recognized for three minutes. mr. coffman: the department of defense is cing a near-term shortage of key rare earth materials necessary to support our defense weapons systems and magnets are especily critical. over 97% of rare earth production is controlled by china. currentlthe united states does not have a manufacturer of neo
dimium magnets yet they are found in our ships, aircraft and other critical weapons systems. one key finding of the recent government accountability office report on rare earth materials is the defense supply chain -- in the defense supply chain was that chinese source neo magnets are being included in weapons platforms delivered to the department of defense. america is not currently producing these magnets. the time to address this problem is now. this amendment will help restore america's ability to produce neo magnets and requires the department of defense to develop a plan for establishing this domestic capability and submit it to the congressional defense committee. i urge my colleagues to vote in for of the coffman-else worth
amendment. i geeled back. the chair: the gentleman fm new jersey is recognized. mr. andrews: i yield to the gentleman who has taken a leading interest in evaluating the quality of our impact in afghanistan. very often doin yeoman's work on teed yuss detail and i yield two minutes to mr. mcgovern. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. mcgovern: mr. chairman, mcgovern-jones-welch is an amendment that requires the president to certify that the afghan independent election commission and afghan electoral complaints commission has the protection and legal authority to carry out and oversee fair, free and honest elections absent the fraud that characterized the 2009 presidential elections before u.s. taxpayer dollars can
support the next round of elections. i don't think that that's too much to ask. i was in afghanistan just after the 2009 elections and i didn't meet anyone who thought that those elections were honest. the embassy told me there was fraud. the u.n. told me there was fraud. the afghan people knew there was fraud and president karzai conceded they were fraud. and 00 million, $200 miion of u.s. taxpayer money just went into those elections. just think about it. i don't want to see history repeat itself or the american taxpayer ripped off again. more is at stake than the waste of money. it depends on a honest government that can win the loyalty of the afghan people. if september's elections a also fraudulent, there could be turmoil. no matter where you stand on our policy in afghanistan, let's make sure the september elections are fair, free and honest.
thiamendment makes sure things are leverage. our men and women are fighting and dying in afghanistan. the least we can ask if they carry out free, fair and honest elections and i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. mckeon: i reserve my time. the chair: the gentleman from new jersey is recognized. mr. andrews: m chairman, i'm pleased toield two minutes to the gentlelady from illinois, who has done very careful work on making sure that the special inspector general for afghanistan is fully discharging a very important function. i yield to ms. schakowsky, two minutes. the chair: the gentlelady is recognized for two minutes. ms. schakowsky: i rise in support of this en bloc amendment which encludes oversight of contractors in afghanistan. the united states employs over 100,000 contractors in afghanistan and we need to ensure that we have adequate
oversight. reckless behavior by contractors can endanger our mission in afghanistan and failure to adequately oversee money can leave billions of taxpayer dollars vulnerable to waste, fraud and abuse. my amendment requires a special inspector general to afghanistan to report to congress on existing contractor oversight and make recommendations for increasing oversight and preventing contractors with a history of waste, fraud and abuse from getting future contracts. i would like to thank chairman skelton for supporting this amendment and congressmen mcgovern, hinchey and moran and i yield back. the chair: the gentlelady yields back. the gentleman from missouri is recognized -- the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. mckeon: reserve. mr. andrews: may i inquire how much each side has left on this
amendment? the chair: the gentleman from new jersey has 6 1/2 minutes. the gentleman from california has 8 1 minutes. mr. andrews: if i may, mr. chairman, inquire of my friend from california or missouri if has any speakers on the amendment? the chair: without objection, the gentleman from missouri will control the time. the gentleman from missouri is recognized. mr. akin: i don't think we have any other speakers. we yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. mr. andrews: the gentleman has yielded back all time on the other side? mr. akin: no. no. i'm reserving. the chair: the gentleman reserves. mr. andrews: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. andrews: it is very important that we take assessment of the excellent ideas in this bill that both parties support. much of the debate this afternoon and this evening has been consumed by points of controversy. but there are some major points
of consensus that each side should be proud it's supporting. number one, each side is vigorously supporting a significant pay increase for the men and women who wear the uniform of our country. each side is supporting a very signifant increase in the quality of housing, education and health care for the service mbers and for their families. each side is supporting a significant step toward our navy , reaching the point where our admirals tell us it ought to be. in 2008, our navy had authorized and at sea in the fleet, 286 ships. under this bill, our navy will have authorized at a this -- and in the fleet, 293 ships. mr. taylor has rked hard on this point with the full bipartisan support with the
republican side. our admirals tell us that the optimal size they would like to see us have is 313 ships. so we have a ways to go, but progress is being made. i mentioned earlier the legislation before the house authorizes $9.8 billion for our special operations command. in the toughest neighborhoods in the world, in the toughest circumstances in the world, it is the men and women under the command of socom and the bill on both sides supports them very substantially. as i mentioned before, this bill dramatically upgrades the amount of money we spend on i had filing, securing, disabling nuclear material that could be used to formal nuclear improvised nuclear device. and this is broadly embraced by both sides. mr. chairman, i just want you
and others observing tonight to understand that it is the nature of debate that we do dwell as we have these ma hours on points of disagreement, and they are profound points of disagreement, but it is important tt people understand the points of agreement that are before us, whether it is compensation for our service members and their families, their health care, their housing, their job and educational opportunities, whether it is the end strength of our navy, which, frankly is bipartisanommitment to bring us up to those 313 ships, whether it's the end strength of our armed forces. in 2008, the end strength of our armed forces was in the neighborhood of 1.4 million peop, active duty, guard and reserve, a little over that. this legislation before us tonight would have the end strength of our armed forces
exceed 1.5 million people in our active duty, guard and reserve. . i would want to say that it is healthy, anticipated that the floor of this chamber will be a place where our points of disagreement are vigorously and honestly pursued. as a compliment to both sides of the aisle, to mr. mckeon and chairman skelton, the legislative product before us tonight has ny, ny, many more points of con sen susms and we're looking forward to building on those pnts of consensus. at this point, i would reserve the balance of our time and inquire of the minority if they have speakers. the chair: the gentlema reserveses. without objection, the gentleman from california will control the time. >> inquire as to how much time we he left on each side. the chair: the gentleman from california has 8 1/2 minutes remake. the gentleman from new jersey
has 2 1/2 minutes remaining. >> do you have further speakers? mr. andrews: i would say only myself at this point. mr. mckeon: i'll reserve. we have other speakers. the chair: the gentleman from california reserves. mr. andrews: i would inquire of the chair how much time is left on each side of the aisle? the chair: 2 1/2 minutes for the the gentleman from new jersey. 8 1/2 for the the gentleman from california. mr. andrews: i will yield myself two minutes. the chair: the gentlan from new jersey is recognized for two mines. mr. andrews: i also wanted to make reference to the excellent work that's been done in this bill in the area of our missile defense program. now, there are obviously disagreements over what the structure of that program will be. but when one looks at the fortification of defenses that we already have at fort greely and other places, when one loo at the additional investment that we are making, in the
successful regional range missile programs that have tested and been quite efficient, i think that the accurate conclusion is that we are fortifying the defenses which have been proven to work in the missile defense field. we are building upon those successes, and we are preparing ourselves for a future generation of defenses that are effective both in will regional context, and in the context of intercontinental ballistic missiles. the nonproliferation strategy really has two aspects. it is to be prepared to defend ourselves if a strike occurs, but it is to discourage the proliferation of nuclear capability around the woras the administration has done in the security council negotiations with iran, and it's done with its layered defense missile strategy. so, again, i think this is anoth point where there is more consensus than disagreement. there is disagreement between the two sides over the best way to pursue an effective ballistic
missile defense. i don't think there is a disagreement over whether the pursuit of a ballistic missile defense is in the interest of the country. it most certainly is. and i would conclude at this point, mr. chairman, where i began. we know that the corner stone of our country's defense is not found in this chamber. it is found at bases throughout the world, both in the continental united states and at forward oting bases and other places overseas. we are profoundly grateful to the men and women who volunteered to serve this country. we on a bipartisan basis are expressing our gratitude where it counts. compensation, support for families, education, health care, and other opportunities. with that, i would reserve the balance of our time. the chair: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from is rised. mr. mckeon: at this time, i would like to yield to the the gentleman from missouri, mr. akin, for three minutes. the chair: the gentleman is
recognized for three minutes. mr. akin: thank you, mr. chairman. i'm glad you didn't call it missouri. it's complicated. just to respond briefly here, i know we're working through some en bloc amendments. we're comfortable with those amendments. there is some disagreement on missile defense, and i think at least a considerable vulnerability that many people on our side are very concerned with that. that was the decision not to build the ground base system in poland and the radar in the czech republic, but instead subject that the ageist class cruisers can cruise around in the ocean and take care of the mission to stop ballistic missiles, particularly a longer range ballistic missile possibly equipped with nuclear warheads coming out of iran. the fact of the matter is that the ageist class missiles do not have the velocity necessary to stop a longer range ballistic missile. and the only way we had to do
that was quite simply the ground base system, which is a 20-ton missile. the ageist class missiles were more two-ton. so there is a factor of 10 difference in the weight of the missile. obviously the much larger missile can develop the velocity it needs to go after a very high flying fast moving ballistic missile that could come from iran as early as in the next few years. and sohere is a serious concern that in terms of missile defense, we do not really have protection over western europe, and our troops that are stationed in western europe. f more concern to us was the level that we received from the pentagon as to what the real capabilities of this potentially standard rock 3 missile -- called a standard block 23-a and what velocities that could
atin. from the sources i've personally been able to discuss this with and keeping things within the non-classified setting, that missile, we have very little hope, will ever develop the velocity necesryo take out a high-flying ballistic missile. so we have a big gap in our ballistic missile capabilities, and that gap is the size of europe. and we are betting on the development of a missile that just does not have the physical size or capabilities of developing the velocities we need to protect europe. we don't think that's good strategy. we think that's a weak nns the bill. i still support the bill. it's a good bill, unless we put bad amendments on it. and the bloc of amendments are ok, but we do have some weaknesses and certainly ballistic missile defense is one of those weaknesses. and i d yield? what was i yielded? the chair: the yield can yield
back the three minutes thatere yielded to him. mr. mckeon: yield the gentleman an additional two minutes. the chair: the gentleman yields back. mr. andrews: may i inquire of the chair how much time is remaining on each side? the chair: the gentleman from new jersey has 30 seconds remaining. the gentleman from california has 5 1/2 minutes remaining. mr. andrews: i would say through the chair, we have one mr. speaker, mr. taylor. so i would reserve until the gentleman exhausts his time. mr. mckeon: is 30 seconds going to be enough for the gentleman? mr. andrews: i'm sure he'd welcome more time from your side if you'd be so willing. mr. mckeon: to the point that mr. akin made -- the chair: the gentleman from new jersey controlshe time. mr. andrews: i reserve my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from california.
mr. mckeon: i yield to the the gentleman from mississippi for one minute. the chair: the gentleman from mississippi is yield for one minute. >> in the past 20 years, the filipinos and even our fellow americans in puerto rico have asked us to leave. if you put your missile defense in poland or check lo slavackya, you are one election away from having spent billions of dollars and being asked to leave. you put your missile defense on ships, you can get to within 12 miles of the iranian coast. mr. taylor: you don't have to ask anyone's permission to fire it. if you think about it, all of our known enemies have a coastline. that's why it make sense to put our missile defense on a ship because you put the ship between our nation and our enemies. i thank the gentleman very, very much for yielding me the minute. i thank the gentleman for asking a great question. i yield back. the cha: the gentleman yields back.
the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. mckeon: i yield myself much time as i may consume. again, back to this point, we weren't concerned on the missile defense -- about putting them on the ships. we don't have the missile to put on the ships. there will be a gap in the time that we don't have the other missiles before we get the missiles for the ship. i think that's a concern we have, and hopefully that will be worked out, that we will have a missile instead of just a planned missile. mr. chairman, i'll yield back the balance of our time. the cha: the the gentleman from yields back. the gentleman from? mr. andrews: -- i would like to thank him for that and just conclude by point outing that we've heard some disagreements here about the nature of ballistic missile defense. but to my core point, there is
much in this bill that's been embraced by both sides of the aisle because both sides of the aisle have a profound respect for the men and women who serve and a profound appreciation for the core duty we have to preserve and defend the country. with that, i would yield back the balance our time and urge september of the en bloc. the chair: those in favor say aye. follows.
congress finds the following. one, on january 12, 2010, the nation of haiti was hit by a magnitude 7.0 earthquake, adversely affecting nearly three million people. two, the united states has provided millions of -- >> mr. chairman, i ask unanimous consent to suspend the reading. the clerk: on the grounds to give more of the next year. >> mr. chairman, i ask unanimous consent to dpense with the reading. the chair: without objection, so ordered. the gentleman from new jersey -- pursuant to house resolution 1404, the gentleman from new jersey, mr. andre, and the gentleman from california, mr. mckeon, each will control 10 minutes. mr. andrews: thank you, mr. chairman. again, we appreciate the efforts of members on both sides of the aisle in working through a wide array of problems in a very thoughtful way. each of these amendments has beeneviewed and accepted by both the minority d majority staff. we thank the members for their
efforts. and at this point, i would yield to the author of one of the en bloc amendments, the gentleman from iowa, mr. braley, for five minutes. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. braley: i thank the gentleman for yielding. the amendment ve offered is an amendment that it makes great sense, especlly given the enormous cost taxpayers have paid, for operation enring freedom and operation iraqi freedom. one of the things we know is that there is a price for war. 65 years ago, my father was en route from guam to iwo jima as an 18-year-old marine. at that time, the world had been at war for a little over five years. here in the united states, we have been at war since september 11, 2001. my amendment offered a simple, common sense solution that requis the administration to
submit a report to congress on the long-term cost of the wars in iraq and afanistan. we have been engaged in the war for almost nine years now in iraq, for seven year -- in afghanistan for almost nine years now, in iraq, for seven years. previously they failed to submit a cost estimate that was required in the fiscal year 2005 defense appropriations bill. according to the congressional research service, through fiscal year 2009ngress has appropriated at least $944 billion in iraq and afghanistan and we have lost over 4,400 american lives in iraq and over 1,060 lives in afghanistan. because of this immense cost, the american people deserve to have an honest estimate about how much these wars are going to cost us over the long-term. this is especially critical on
the issue of future health care costs. my amendment addresses an important issue and one of the things that this goes back to is an oversight subcommittee hearing we had after the walter reed building 18 fiasco in 2007. at that hearing, retired lieutenant general chip rodeman, a former air force surgeon general and a member of the independent review group told me, we recognize the cost is immense and it is our moral obligation to address those issues in independent review group report, the four signature injuries of these wars were identified. post-traumatic stress disorder, traumatic brain injury, increased survival of severe burns and amputation were the significant wounds. recovery from these can take years and include extended rehabilitation and all the life
complications that emerge over time from such trauma. we don't have a good understanding today of how much it's going to cost to take care of these wounded veterans and we need to acknowledge the true cost. already over 1,300 service members have suffered amputations as result of their service in iraq and afghanistan and more than 243,000 have been treated for mental heth conditions. over 129,000 have been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder. these numbers will only continue to grow. we also know that according to the u.s. life tables, mr. chairman, the life expectancy of an 18-year-old to 19-year-old male is 58 years. that means almost 60 queers of treatment and care for many wounded veterans. that's why we need an honest and accurate assessment of the true cost of the war. my amendment requires the president to estimate the number of veterans expected to suffer from these signature wounds and the cost it's going to take to treat them and providthem with the care ty
deserve. that's why this amendment is a common sense, transparent requirement. it'song overdue and it's going to give the american taxpayers who are footing the bill for these deserving veterans a better idea of what the long-term cost is actually going to be and that's why i urge everyone support it and reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. mckeon: i yield to the gentlemafrom georgia, mr. broun, two minutes. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. broun: i thank the gentleman for yielding. i thank you, mr. speaker. i rise today in support of my amendment that's included in this en bloc amendment. it includes my language which encourages the president of the united states to order the u.s. flag to be flown at american outposts in haiti. it's to be flown at those
outposts as we continue to assist in earthquake relief. i would like to thank chairman skelton and ranking member mckeon for their hard work on this bill and for including my amendment in this en bloc package. as the united states extends a helping hand to our neighbor nation ohaiti, i am disheartened that the president has decided that our service men and women should not work in their outpost under the american flag and has ordered the american flag to be ceased flying over that outpost. the american flag is a symbol that our men and women in uniform are promoting the americanpirit of rebuilding hope, prosperity and opportunity. as a marine and naval medical officer, i understand that it is critical for morale that our military work under the american flag, especially when our president -- our presence
in a foreign country is under peaceful conditions. as a sign and -- a sign of respect and support for the selfss efforts of the men and women irk urge my collgues to support this amendment. mr. speaker, i request that my full statement be entered in the record. the chair: withoutbjection, so ordered. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. andrews: may i inquire as to the time remaining on each side? the chair: thgentleman has 4 1/2 minutes remaining and the gentleman from california has 8 1/2 minutes remaining. mr. andrews: i'd like to recognize the gentleman from north carolina, mr. price, for e nute. i apologize, three minutes. the chair: the gentleman from north carolina is recognized for three minutes. mr. price: i thank the gentleman for yielding. mr. speaker, i rise today in support of amendment extending oversight and accountility for security ctractors overseas, contractors
rforming security functions as one element of this en bloc amendment. the gentleman from south carolina, mr. spratt, joins me in this effort and i also want to acknowledge the efforts of other members, including mr. schakowsky. this amendment is brief and straightforward. it will extend the fiscal year 2008 defense bill tt strengthened oversight of private security contractors in iraq and afghanistan to additional areas in which there is or could be a significant security contractor presence. i don't need to recount here, mr. chairman, the arguments in favor of greater oversight and accountability for armed contractors, particularly those operating in ars in which our military is operating. the highrofile incidents of contractor misconduct that have punctuated our campaigns in iraq and afghanistan should speak for themselves. in responding to these incidents, congress has come a
long way to improving federal management and oversight of security ctractors, most notably through several important reforms including in the fiscal 2008 defense authorization bill. these reforms, many of which were drawn from my broader contractor accountability legislation have been credited with improving both the operational capabilities of the armed forces and iraq and afghanistan and congress' ability to conduct effective oversight of private security contractors. as our military faces new and emerging threats in other areas of the world, it's critical that these effective oversight measures be maintained and extended. this seeks to do just that by extending several key reforms enacted in 2008 through -- to additionalreas. the amendment aims four such areas by name but the broader intent is to give the defense department, the state department an the usaid the tools they need to apply
coordination and oversight to any area in which we're conducting significant operations. i want to thank chairman skelton, ranking member mckeon and others for drafting this legislion and the effort to improve transparency and accountability in the use of contractors. i urge my colleagues to support this amendment and yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. mckeon: mr. chairman, i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman from new jersey is recognized. mr. andrews: mr. chairman, it's my pleasure at this point to yield to a gentleman who's been at the forefront of trying to promote american jobs through this bill, the gentleman from connecticut, for one nute, mr. murphy. the chair: the gentleman from connecticut is recognized for one minute. mr. murphy: thank you, mr. chairman. chew on this fact. in 2007, there were 14,000 waivers granted for the buy
american law in 2003. one year later in 2008, this number jumped to 65,000 a 145% increase in buy ameran waivers that cost tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of u.s. manufacturing jobs. that's why the amendments being offered in this block are so important. we need to start shining a light on the outrageous flow of defense jobs overseas. this amendment would require the d.o.d. to explain the large increase in waivers from one year to the next and require them to explain if they looked for american products before granting the waiver. if we want to grow american manufacturing, we need to start with the billions of dollars spent at the department of defense. i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california.
mr. mckeon: mr. chairman, i'm prepared to yield to the gentlelady, i just wanted to give her time to get to a mike. mr. mckeon: i yield one minute to my friend and colleague, the gentlelady from maryland, ms. edwards, one minute. the chair: the gentlelady is recognized for one minute. ms. edwards: i thank the gentleman for yielding and i want to thank chairman skelton and the committee for your leadership on this issue and
continued commitment to what it takes for our service members and families and most especially to my colleague, representative lipinski from illinois and mr. murphy of connecticut, for working together to find amendments that bolster domestic job creation. i rise today to urge a yes vote on this en bloc amendment as well as the underlying legislation. and most specifically, the amendment i led encourages the departmenof defense for to the account for the impact of defense spending programs. with the d.o.d. spending billions a year, it's necessary to analyze the effect of this spending on our economy. the amendments by my two colleagues are equally important. they seebling tensure that domestic companies are included and strengthen the buy america waiver process.
these provisions close major loopholes and fix major deficiencies. i yield back and i urge a yes vote on this en bloc amendment. the chair: the gentleman from new jersey is recognized. mr. andrews: i thank the chairman. at this point, i'm privileged to yld to another champion of growth of american jobs here, the ntleman from chicago, the runner up city in this year's stanley cup finals, mr. lipinski for one minute. the chair: the gentleman from illinois is recognized for one minute. mr. hi pinskey: i'd like to -- mr. lipinski: i'li to commend chairman skelton and the ranking member for their support on this. i'd like to encourage support of this en bloc group of amendments. these amendments would bolster national security and create american jobs, two critic goals for america. in this recession, the loss of manufacturing base to country
such as as china has only sped up. it's bad enough with consumer goods but to depd on foreign companies to supply our national security is risky. in this time -- it is time american contractors compete for this contracts. my amendment would give u.s. companies a chance to compete by requiring the do.d. to solicit bids from american suppliers. this and the other buy american amendments will strengthen our national securitycreate american jobs. i urge my colleagues to support these amendments, the en bloc amendments. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from california. mr. mckeon: i yield myself such time as i may consume. it's been a while since i read any of these letters, maybe some people h't heard of the letters yet, so i'd like
to read, we're only given five minutes to discuss don't ask, don't tell so we have to talk about it when we get an opportunity because this is something that i think is going to affect the 2.5 million people in the military, plus their families and so we have very strong feelings about this. it's unfortunate that the majority is only giving us five minutes in which to express our views and a chance to let the people of america know what is happening here. this is a letter from secretary gates that was written april 30, and then two days ago, he reaffirmed his stance that he still stands by what he wrote to chairman skelton. dear, mr. chairman, i am writing in response to your letter of april 2 requesting my views on the advisability of legislative action. so he's talking about the possibility that the murphy amendment would be made in order
for this mark-up. legislative action to repeal the so called don't ask, don't tell statute prior to the completion of the department of defense review of this matter. i believe in the strongest possible terms that the department must prior to any legistive action be allowed the opportunity to conduct a thorough, objective, and systematic assessment of the impact of such a policy change. develop an attentive, comprehensive ilementation plan, and provide the president and the congress with the results of this effort in order to ensure that this step is taken in the most informed and effective manner. a critical element of this effort is the need to systematically engage our forces, their families, and the broader military community throughout is process. our military must be afforded the opptunity to inform us of their concerns, insights, and
suggestions if we are to carry out this change successfully. therefore, i strongly oppose any leslation that seeks to change this policy prior to the completion of this vital assessment process. further, i hope congress will not do so, as it would send a very damaging message to our men and women in uniform, th in essence, their views, concerns, and perspectives do not matter on an issue with such direct impact and consequence for them and their families. signed by the chairman of the joint chiefs, admiral mullen, and robert gates, secretary of defense. may i inquire as to how much time i have remaining? the chair: the gentleman from california has 4 1/2inutes remake. the gentleman from new jersey haone minute remaining. mr. mckeon: thank you, mr. chairman. i will continue to yield myself such time as i may consum the chair: the gentleman may
proceed. mr. mckeon: what the secretary is saying here is there was a process set in place that the president in the state of the union said he wanted the repeal of don't ask, don't tell by the end of this year. the secretary in response set up a process whereby the military could be contacted, their opinions could be heard, the opinions of all of them that are contacted could be taken into -- under advisement by the chairman, by each of the chiefs. they could give their best military advice to the secretary, which he could then give to congress and to th president as to how we proceed on this matter. that was supposed to be done before december of this year. they are on track to do it.
this month, a company was hired by a competitive bid to go into e field to interview people, which they will do in various methods to give us a comprehensive answer to what people feel about this. 350,000 people they will survey. and now, if this passes tonight, if this amendment passes, i know the amendment says nothing will take place prior to that study being handed in, but we all know it's like we say we're going to talk to you, but we've already made the decision, so gohead, tell us whatever you want, and it's like they will not -- they will know that their opinions really don't matter because the vote's already taken place. the decision's already been made. and they're left out of the loop. and as members of the chiefs of
the various services told me, this disrespects the military, and it should not be done. each of them have stated on the phone to me and in letters that this should not be done. and with that, mrchairman, i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from new jersey is recognized. mr. andrews: we have only . kennedy left to speak. and i believe we have the right to close on this, so does the gentleman intend to speak again, or -- thchair: the gentleman has two minutes remaining. mr. mckeon: i'd be happy to yield one of those to my good frnd from rhode island, mr. kennedy. the chair: the gentleman from rhode island is recognized for one minute. mr. kennedy: thank you, mr. chairman. i want to thank mr. mckeon and
obviously mr. andrews for their great stewardship of this importa legislation and say the real don't ask, don't tell qustion that we have for our military is don't ask how many anti-depressants you are on, because this nation had to call you up, not once, not twice, but three and four times. the real don't ask, don't tell question is don't ask how many parents or how many wives at home waiting with their children worry about their families getting called up over and over and over again because we won't up the standing military so we don't have to overextend these tours of duty over and over and over again, creating thlargest generation of military men and women who are getting permaneny scarred because of their overextension of service of duty. that's the real don't ask, don't tell. the don'tsk, don't tell is
what is the long-term cost to ts countrymen tall health-wise? a terrible neglect of our men and women in uniform. the chair: the gentleman's time is expired. mr. kennedy: 30 second more? mr. mckeon: i'm sorry, i need that 30 seconds. mr. andrews: i will yield the gentleman 30 seconds. mr. kennedy: i want to thank the gentleman from new jersey, because 72% of the health care for vetans is going to be the private insurance market, and thanks to this gentleman andrews and many others who led the way for the private insurance market covering no preexisting conditn, no annual or lifetime catch, 72% of veterans out there are going to have their cognitive neurological disorders, theraumatic brain injury covered, covered by the private insurance system thanks
to this the gentleman from new jersey, mr. andrews and his colleagues on the democratic side. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from california. is recognized. mr. mckeon: thank you, mr. chairman. i appreciate my friend from rhode island's passion. and i share that with him. i have very deep concerns about the military, and they have been asked over and over again, and they have responded over and over and over again. and i've been to funerals and i've looked into the parents' eyes and i have talked to them and i have seen. and i also ow that in war, there are no unwounded. as somebody more eloquent than i ated. and that's one of the tragedies. the other tragedy is what happened on 9/11 where we were attacked, and now we've been engaged in this worldwide war on
terrorism. it's not something we ask for, and it's just something that our nation has responded from the days of the creation of this nation, when the men rode to the sounds of the guns, when they died at valley foe, froze to death, starved to death. they've sacrificed for years, and i'm saying give them an opportunity to have their say to follow through with the plan that has been set. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from new jersey is recognized. mr. andrews: may i inquire, the time is 30 seconds? the chair: the gentleman has 30 seconds. mr. andrews: i thank the gentleman from california for yielding the time for the geleman from rhode island. i would say of course we recognize our dy to listen to those who serve in uniform. we also recognize our duty to raise the pay, to give them the tools and weapons ncessary to do their job, to support their families, and to give them a strategy that works to defend this country. this bill does all of those
things. we should support the bill and support the en bloc amendment before the body. i would yield back the balance of our time. the chair: the gentleman yields back. the question is on the amendments en bloc. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the eyes have it. the en bloc amendments are agreeto. it is now in order to consider amendment number 62 printed in house report 111-498. for what purpose does the the gentleman from new york seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, i have an amendment at the desk, amendment number 62. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. he clerk: amendment number 62, printed in house report 111-498, offered by mr. mcmahon of new york. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 1404, the gentleman from new york mr. mcmahon and a member opposed each will control five minus. the chair recognizes the
gentleman from new york. mr. mcmahon: thank you, mr. speaker, and i yield myself as much time as i may consume. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. mcmahon: thank you. i thank the great the gentleman from missouri for recognizing the significance of the increasing suicide rate in our armed services and the need to increase mental health professionals to combat this disturbing trend. i would also like to thank my colleagues, congressman tom rooney, harry teague, for their partnership with me on this amendment and on veterans' mental health issues which we have tackled in a very bipartisan fashion. mr. speaker, serving in the military canave lingering effects on service members and the families that support them. for this reason, the mental health care needs of the tricare population are large and diverse, requiring a skilled group of professionals to diagnose and treat a variety of
disorders. unfortunately, these professionals do not currently exist and the mental health needs of our service men and women are, quite frankly, not being met. but congrescan help increase this pool by implementing the recommendation of the congressionally mandated institute of medicine study, which makes recommendations for permitting counselors to practice independently under the tricare program. in addition, the committee recommends that tricar implement a comprehensive quality management system for all its mental health professionals. under current tricare rules, mental health counselors are required to practice under a physician's supervision, and their patients must be referred to them by a physician in order for their services to be eligible for reimbursement. this requirement distinguishes them from other mental heth professionals who practice without such restrictions.
this amendment would encourage the secretary of defense to implement these goals by the end of the year, and to increase mental health professionals available to our men and wen in uniform. we need to provide the coverage, but we also need to provide the professionals who can provide the care. we see in so many cases the high rates of suicide of our returning warriors, and we mustards this. eventually, this increase will reduce the stigma of seeking mental health treatment and reduce the high levels of suicide in the armed services, as i mentioned. mr. speaker, i thank you for the time, and at this time, i reserve the balance of that time. the chair: the gentleman from reserves. does any member seek time in opposition? the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. mckeon: mr. chairman, i don't oppose the amendment, but
i rise to claim the time in opposition. the chair: the gentleman from california is recognized for five minutes. mr. mckeon: mr. chairman, i yield myself as much time as i may consume. again, if we'd have been given the time to discuss don't ask, don't tell, we could have spent more time talking about all of the good things in the bill, but only having five minutes to discuss that, we have to use whatever time we can to explain to people what is going on. when i talked to members of the joint chiefs a couple of days ago, one of them said one of the reasons that he opposes doing anything right now in opposition to the plan that was set up earlier this year was because he says i'm here, i understand the innuendos on the hill, i understand the process of the
amendment and understand that it doesn't kick in until later. but he says the people in the field, the service people that we promised to hear from before we take action don't understand that, and he said the headline will read don't ask, don't tell repealed. they don't have to wait for us, the senate already did it, the breaking news alert on fox news is the senate armed forces committee votes to repeal military's don't ask, don't tell policy on gays. if we flow through and do the same thing tonight with the murphy amendment that will be the headline. the young men and women in afghanistan, when they're watching on fox news, that's what they're seeing right now. so then, when we do get around to this company we hired to make this survey treach out to 350,000 of our service people and their families, when
they hear this question, they'll say, what, you're asking us now after the decision? what nd of respect is that to show to our young men and women who are out there laying their life on the line. they signed a contract they joined the military, they're an all-volunteer force. and they signed under certain circumstances. now those are going to be changed without any input from them. oh, yeah, we're going to follow through with the charade. we will have the survey. it will be turned in in december but the die is already cast if that amendment passes tonight. i don't think that is the way that we should be treating our military. especially the people on this committee. our responsibili is to look out for those young me and young women that are out there defending us and defending freedom around the world. and the lack of respect to give them the opportunity to have input on this very important
issue, one that we've lived with now for 17 years, that has to be changed now that doesn't make sense. a member earlier this evening talked about comn sense. and the welcome -- and the lack of it we see around here. and one of the reaso we're given an 18% vote of approval from the american people, because we show a lack of common sense. we show a lack of respect this amendment will show a lack of respect to the young men and young women in uniform and their families. with that, i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from new york is recognized. >> i have no speaker at this time. the chair: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from california has 1 1/2 minutes remain, the gentleman from new york has two minutes remaining. 2 1/2 minutes remaining. mr. mckeon: i yield myself the
balance of my time, mr. chairman. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. mckeon: again, let me read from the admiral's letter, he's chief of naval operaons. i share the view of secretary gates that the best approach would be to complete t department of defense review before there is any legislation to change the law. my concern is that legislation changes at this point, regardless of the precise language used in this -- and this amendmentas written very carefully, may cause confusion on the status of the law in the fleet and disrupt the review process itself by leading sailors to question whether their input matters. he is right on target. obtaining the vie and opinions of the force and assessing them in the light of the issues involved will be complicated by a shifting legislative backdrop and its
associated debate. i plead with you to give the time necessary to have the evaluation, to follow the process that's been set. what are we afraid of? is something going to happen that you think is going to change this process? why not let thehave their input? why not follow through with the process set by the secretary? the company that's been hired to go out and reach out to these 350,000 of our 2.5 million serving, let's follow through with the process. let's respect our young men and women in unirm. and follow through with the process that's been determined. thank you, mr. chairman. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman's time has expire. the gentleman from new york is recognized. >> i yield myself the remainder of my time. the chair: the gentleman is recognized.
>> i must apologize to the gentleman from california, perhaps my new york accent, my pronunciation wasn't clear enough. the amendment i'm proposing seeks to provide to our returning warriors when they come home and when they continue to -- continue their live here's in this country to get the mentahealth treatment they need that they cannot currently have. mr. speaker, the house is not in order. the chair: the gentleman is correct. the house is not in order. the house will come torder. the gentleman from nework is recognized. mr. mcmahon: the issue i spoke to in my remarks dealt with an impoant issue. that is how to make sure that this country provides the mental health services for our returning warriors. i did not think that at issue would be one that would be picked up in my eloquence by fox news. i'm not quite sure what -- how
it deal worse issues but i want to be clear, i want the record to be clear, i was speaking to amendment 62, one that i think is a very important issue, an important issue that everybody in this body addresses and teals with and that is providing mental health services and that is ali spoke to. i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from new york. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from missouri seek recognition? mr. skelton: pursuant to h.res. 1404, i offer an en bloc amendment, number seven. chip the clerk will designate the amendments en bloc. the clerk: amendments en bloc
number seven, offered by mr. skelton of missouri, consisting of amendments 38, 59, 53, 6 072, 73, and 75 printed in house report 111-498. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 1404, the gentleman from missouri, mr. skelton, and the gentleman from california, mr. mckeon, each will control 10 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from missouri. mr. skelton: i urge the committee to adopt the amendments en bloc, all of which have been examined by both the majority and the minority. mr. chairman, i yield five minutes to my friend the gentleman from new york, mr. hinch chee -- hinchey. the chair: the gentlen from new york is cognized for five minutes. mr. hinchey: i have an amendment that will ensure that the department of defense supports the growin domestic
solar ener industry. the department of defense as we know is the largest consumer of energy on this planets. fortunately, the pentagon is beginning to more fully understand just how important energy is to our national security. as the department purchases solar panels to address very serious energy security concerns at defense nstallationsround our country, we must ensure that those purchases support american renewable energy manufacturing jobs rather than those at other companies and other countries. the buy american act requires products purchased directlyy bithe federal government to contain at let 50% american content this amendment applies the buy american act to the procurement of solar panels purchased indirectly by the department through subcommittees such as energy savings performance, contracts, land leases and utility service contracts. establishing real energy security at our defense installation is itical to r
national security. this amendment is a common sense approach to ensuring that as the department makes committeekey investments in renewable energy, american informi jobs e supported and increased. i urge the support of my colleagues and i express my deep gratitude to chairman skelton for his steadfast support for our national defense. the chair: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california is recognized. the gentleman from new york. i apologize, i thought the gentleman was yielding back. mr. hinchey: thank you very much, mr. chairman. this amendment will help strengthen our nation's oversight over armed security contractors in iraq and afghanistan and eliminate a tax loophole used by dethe defense contractor blackwater.
for too long the private armies of defense contractors have undermined our nation's mission in afghanistan and iraq through the conduct of their personnel. the key to american success is the ability of u.s. forces to win support from the afghan and iraqi people. many of them do not distinguish between armed security contractors and the u.s. mility. for this reason, every time a contractor kills or injures innocent civilians, the very people we seek to protect, it is adevastating blow to our country's strategy to protect the local population. t us recall one example obviously may 5 of last year, two independent contractors working for a blackwater fd company fired their weapons, killing two afghan civilians and wounding a third. adding insult to injury by classifying workers in iraq as independent contractors, rather than employees, blackwater appears to have avoided at least $31 billion in
employment-related taxes. this amendment, sponsored by myself and schakowsky and moran, directs contractors in iact and afghanistan using employees to hire them as direct employees not as contractors. the amendment is narrowed on focused. it applies only to u.s. citizens required to have security clearances for armed security in iraq and afghanistan. it also provides a waiver provision to help close the door on a tax loophole and ensure contractors have full responsibility and better oversight over employees. i urge support for this amendment and i, again, thank chairman skelton for his work on this bill and deep commitment to the men and women of the united states military. i yield back.
the chair: the gentleman yields back. the gentlemanrom california is recognized. mr. mckeon: mr. chairman, i rise in -- i claim the time in opposition though i don't oppo the amendment and i will reserve my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from missouri is recognized. mr. skelton: i yield 1 1/2 minutes to my friend, the gentleman from virginia, . moran. the chair: the gentleman from virginia is recognized for 1 1/2 minutes. mr. moran: thank you, mr. speaker. i thank the chairman. i want to speak specifically to this amendment that addresses a duplicitous employment practice by private security contractors in afghanistan. last year, four employees of parvan, a blackwater subsidiary, were involved in a shooting indent where a number of afghanivilians, one was killed, others were wounded, a subsequent
investigation found the employees were not classified as employees but as independent contractors. then it was revealed they classified them as independent contractors in order to avoid takingesponsibility for their actions. raytheon, the main contract on the afghan border police contract attempted to sever ties with them but they were rebuffed because this company claim to have had no responsibility for or oversight of the people in question, though they hired and were paying for them. this can be prevented. there has to be responsibility for private contractors. they can't be free agents doing what they want over there. they are recognized as working for the american government. we need to make employers responsible for their employees. this is a duplicitous method of avoiding taxes but most importantly, direct responsibility for thactions of private security
contractors. it needs to be ended. i support the other amendments that address the aountability and oversight over private seurity contractors. i thank the speaker. thank you. the chair: the gentleman from california. mr. mckeon: may i inquire as to the time remaining? the chair: the gentleman from missouri has 4 1/2 minutes remaining. the gentleman from california has 10 minutes remaining. mr. mckeondam chairwoman, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. mckeon: i'm sorry we weren't given more time to debate don't ask, don't tell, but in using the time i do have, i'd like toead a couple more letters into the record. this first one is from the american legion, from the national commander. this is a letter that he sent